Gendered imperatives and their implications for women and men : lessons from research for policy makers
This independent expert report is a review of international research evidence on the relationship between gender and education. It focuses especially on the Lisbon objectives and EU benchmarks. It provides a critical, empirically and theoretically informed analysis of how gendered identities relate to educational processes and outcomes. It summarizes existing research and outlines the policy lessons and measures that are shown to contribute to greater equality between women and men, boys and girls in education. The research reviewed in this report addresses such burning questions as: How are... gender inequalities created and reproduced within and around contemporary schools, in employment and in wider society? Why do boys drop out of school more often than girls? Why do girls and young women not identify with mathematics, science and technology subjects and related careers? What makes reading relatively unattractive to boys, especially working class boys and boys from particular minority backgrounds? How does gender interface with immigration in creating inequalities in education? What role do parents and peers play in determining the gendered outcomes of education? How to challenge gendered choices and inequalities in education (and employment)? The overarching message of this report is that equality does not happen by accident. The research reviewed suggests that education policy makers should ensure that gender equality is a real rather than a rhetorical priority and that change is substantively resourced in teacher education and in school practices.